I am sorely conflicted about Texas.
Some things I love about Tejas.
Friendly people abound.Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Waylon Jennings, ZZ Top and the music in general. South By Southwest is on my bucket list. Food, You know, texmex and BBQ. Mmmm. Their love of imbibing. Is Pearl still around? Texans also know how to party. The great State of Texas is also known to have a lot of stunningly beautiful women.
I've been to Texas and enjoyed myself immensely.
Now the flip side of the coin.
The politicians who garner national attention by saying stunningly stupid shit. Their extremist views on women, minorities and America in general. This isn't a recent development. Unfortunately, at the time, many in America thought if John Kennedy were to be assassinated, it would be in Texas.
For decades Texas was an extreme outlier in American politics. (has LBJ been disowned by Texas yet?) There were a lot of right wing wackos with money railing about commies under the bed, civil rights and not nuking the Ruskies or Chinese. Or both. The Hunts come to mind.
So Texas since Nixon unleashed the covertly racist, reactionary Republican "Southern Strategy"is not a surprise.
That election strategy has unleashed the worst of racial fears and attitudes, not just across the South, but throughout The United States as well.
Where Texas was once a political outlier they are now a leader of extremism. States like Ohio are in a competition to see who can out Texas, Texas.
Rick Perry embarrassed Texas throughout his 2012 run at the White House. As Governor he has drawn amazed disbelief of sane people for his policies. The man's explanations of said policies are confusing at best. He has raised a lot of money for Democrats nationally.
I could list the extreme Texan policies and politicians but I don't have days to devote to it. So, as an example, let's talk about Senator Ted Cruz.
Oh dear God, where to start?
Birthers seem to be OK with Ted Cruz. A white man, born in Canada. Sure, his mother was an American citizen. His father? A Cuban who fought with Castro. A Cuban who didn't bother to become an American citizen until less than a decade ago. Senator Cruz discovered recently he may have dual citizenship. Ooops. He renounced it this week. Just in case anyone thought he may be a Canadian Manchurian Candidate. He needed to reassure Texans he wasn't going to impose Hockey, Curling, Canadian Football, Gay Marriage and universal health care on them.
Obviously this man is eligible to run for President, unlike Our current President. That mixed race man, born in Hawaii to a mother who was an American citizen is blatantly ineligible.
After winning an expensive, even by Texas standards, primary runoff, Cruz has been anointed the intellectual leader of the Tea Party. I would say that is a dubious distinction. Somehow intellectual and Tea Party seems a contradiction in terms. Just sayin'. Though by all accounts he is said to be a very intelligent man. Princeton . Harvard Law. Like the President. Oops, again.
As a well educated attorney he seems to hold Constitutional beliefs not supported by precedent or Judicial cannon. Another case of a conservative saying I am right though everybody else and American history is wrong. I wonder about his feelings on Marbury v. Madison?
As a matter of policy Senator Cruz(R-TX)has decided not to play nice with the Senate Republican Caucus.The Freshman Senator has broken ranks with the party repeatedly. He has declined to endorse Minority leader McConnell in his Primary in Kentucky. This could cause Senator Cruz problems should McConnell be reelected to the Senate and as Minority Leader in the next Senate. Or, God Forbid, Majority Leader.
Ted has staked out a position that defunding the ACA should be the Republican Party's stand in upcoming Continuing Funding Resolution talks. He says fund everything except the ACA. Pick a fight over this with the Democrats and the President. Republican leadership in both Houses see this as a loser. Shutting down the Federal Government didn't workout so well the last time.
Cruz has been ripped by other Republicans for pushing a shutdown to build his mailing lists and support for a 2016 run at the Presidency. His response? Calling the Senate Republicans the Surrender Caucus. A good idea to alienate people whose support you may need if you do run for POTUS.
Senator Cruz opposes abortion rights. He voted no on The Violence Against Women Act. He has said unemployment Compensation creates unemployment. Marriage Equality will end free speech. Funding birth control is an assault on our liberties.Ted felt the Newtown families were props as he opposed background checks.
A Harvard Law educated Attorney said that the only reason the President hasn't been impeached is a Democratic controlled Senate. Shh. Ignore there is no impeachable offense. He truly thinks that the public will give the Republicans a pass on shutting down the government over the ACA if Dems don't cave.
All in all, even for Tejas, this man is a special kind of crazy. He masks it well. He tries to appear reasonable as he says something beyond the pale.
With Cruz, Paul and the usual suspects lining up for a '16 run, they will make the '12 field look reasonable and thoughtful. It seems the GOP has bought the myth that had they run someone far right the would have beat a left/center Democrat.
Good luck with that idea. Go for it.